New Hampshire’s Inadequate Draft Solid Waste Plan

landfill with garbage trucks

August 29, 2022 (CONCORD, NH) – Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) is pushing back against New Hampshire’s inadequate draft plan for managing solid waste in the state. The Department of Environmental Services’ (DES) Solid Waste Management Plan will guide how New Hampshire manages solid waste, including landfilling, recycling, and composting, over the next ten years.  

“After DES blatantly ignored the law requiring an updated waste plan, any progress is a step in the right direction,” said CLF New Hampshire attorney Heidi Trimarco. “But this draft plan is inadequate and uninspiring. Instead of demonstrating leadership and providing the guidance New Hampshire needs, DES has provided just a laundry list of recommendations, without any real steps to actually achieve them.”  

CLF filed comments pushing for New Hampshire to come up with a plan that will lead to waste reduction and a limit on out-of-state waste. Without leadership from DES, New Hampshire will continue to be a dumping ground for garbage from Massachusetts and other states. 

DES has been ignoring a law that requires officials to engage in ongoing, statewide solid waste management planning, and to use that planning to decide whether to grant permits for new and expanded landfills. Despite a mandate to periodically update its State Waste Plan, DES has not done so since 2003. DES released its draft plan in August and plans to release a final plan in October. 

CLF previously filed a lawsuit challenging DES’s yearslong failure to update the State Waste Plan. 

CLF experts are available for further comment.